About breastfeeding

 
 
 

Breastfeeding is the best for babies and mommies: it can protect children against infections and reduce the possibility of later health problems (including diabetes, obesity, and asthma), and for mothers it helps the uterus to contract, helps bleeding to cease more quickly after delivery, and can reduce the risk of breast and ovarian cancer. “What else?” As HE would say.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life and that breastfeeding continue for at least 12 months. Yes, it is not easy with the current pace of life, but it is the best. Breast milk is the best source of nutrition for the newborn, its components (proteins, fats, carbohydrates, calcium, iron, and vitamins) are more easily digested than in formula or cow’s milk. Some fats in human milk are essential for the health of the baby (they are needed to absorb some vitamins and are an important source of energy), and long chain omega-3 fatty acids, particularly, are needed for brain, retina, and nervous system development, and have a crucial role in early visual and neurodevelopment.

In the case of obese mothers, breastmilk composition has special features: a pro-inflammatory fatty acid profile (more omega-6 fatty acids than omega-3 fatty acids) and decreased concentrations of global fatty acids and lutein (which is important for retina).

Therefore, the intake of long chain omega-3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA) is even more important, if possible, for obese mothers.

 

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